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The picturesque, well-preserved medieval town of Siena lies in scenic hill just south of Florence, between the Chianti area and Maremma. Siena is a treasure trove of art, pageantry and architecture. Visit Giovanni Pisano’s wonderful black-and-white Gothic Cathedral and tour the Palazzo Pubblico; the climb up to the bell Tower – Torre del Mangia – rewards the visitor with a great view over the city. If you’re there at the beginning of July or in the middle of August, try not to miss the world – famous Palio horse race, a tradition dating from the Renaissance, that takes place in the Piazza del Campo, a marvellous, sloping plaza in the shape of a half-shell whose circumference is topped on race day with a layer of dirt to create a track. Visit San Gimignano and Volterra, two wonderful tuscan villages.